Narrow- and Broad-Band Satellite Measurements of Shortwave Radiation: Conversion Simulations with a General Circulation Model

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  • a Laboratory for Planetary Atmospheres Research, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY 11794
  • | b Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, University of california, Livermore, CA 94550
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Abstract

The Oregon State University/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory general circulation model has been employed as a vehicle for suggesting and exploring various means of converting narrow-band measurements of reflected solar radiation from the earth-atmosphere system to broad-band quantities. For purely illustrative purposes we have adapted, within the model's solar radiation routine, a narrow-band filter function consisting of a square-wave window extending from 0.5 to 0.9 μm. A limitation of the model, for this sort of endeavor, is that it does not include the wavelength dependence of surface albedos. Nevertheless the model simulations tend to mimic the calibration of a narrow-band instrument, utilizing reflected solar radiation from the earth-atmosphere system as simultaneously measured by a collocated broad-band instrument; for the model, however, this is done in terms of fluxes, in contrast to instrument-measured radiances. The model results suggest that it might be preferable to perform narrow- to broad-band conversions in terms of planetary albedo (or an equivalent quantity), rather than in terms of reflected fluxes or radiances. Further improvement is achieved if, for instruments that can differentiate between clear and overcast conditions, separate clear and overcast calibrations are performed.

Abstract

The Oregon State University/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory general circulation model has been employed as a vehicle for suggesting and exploring various means of converting narrow-band measurements of reflected solar radiation from the earth-atmosphere system to broad-band quantities. For purely illustrative purposes we have adapted, within the model's solar radiation routine, a narrow-band filter function consisting of a square-wave window extending from 0.5 to 0.9 μm. A limitation of the model, for this sort of endeavor, is that it does not include the wavelength dependence of surface albedos. Nevertheless the model simulations tend to mimic the calibration of a narrow-band instrument, utilizing reflected solar radiation from the earth-atmosphere system as simultaneously measured by a collocated broad-band instrument; for the model, however, this is done in terms of fluxes, in contrast to instrument-measured radiances. The model results suggest that it might be preferable to perform narrow- to broad-band conversions in terms of planetary albedo (or an equivalent quantity), rather than in terms of reflected fluxes or radiances. Further improvement is achieved if, for instruments that can differentiate between clear and overcast conditions, separate clear and overcast calibrations are performed.

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